Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme

A UN-HABITAT programme in cooperation with the European Commission and the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Secretariat. Read more

About PSUP

An urbanizing world


The world is inexorably becoming urban. More than half of the world
currently lives in cities and towns and according to current projections,
virtually the whole of the world’s population growth over the next 30
years will be concentrated in urban areas. Cities of the developing world will absorb the vast majority of this growth. By 2030 all developing regions, including Asia and Africa, will have more people living in urban than rural areas.

The biggest cities in the world will also be found mainly in the developing world, including in megacities of over 10 million people. Above and beyond the scale of megacities are megaregions, massive conurbations of people that are now gaining ground in Asia, Latin America and Africa. The world’s forty largest megaregions are currently home to almost 18 percent of the world’s population.
Despite the emergence of megaregions, the majority of urban migrants will be moving to small towns and cities of less than one million inhabitants.

These intermediate cities are predicted to grow at a faster rate
than any other type of city. Natural population increase, rather than
rural-to-urban migration, is becoming a more significant contributor to urban growth in many regions, as is reclassification of rural areas into urban areas.

This unprecedented urbanization has many social and economic advantages for individual urbanites and for cities as a whole. However, inequalities remain within cities - principally evidenced by the rise of slums - and not everyone has shared equally in the opportunities offered by urban life. The Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme (PSUP) intends to seize these opportunities to improve the lives of slum dwellers and ensure that all reap the benefits of urbanization.


The urban advantage

Urbanization can be a positive

force for human development,
socially and economically.
Cities are places of opportunity. Read more


Urban inequality

Despite the enormous potential of cities, the wealth generated by cities does not automatically lead to poverty reduction for all. Read more


Urban successes

Getting urban poverty on the
development agenda has been a struggle in the last thirty years. However, with the adoption. Read more

Urban inclusiveness

UN-HABITAT estimates confirm
that the progress made on the slum target has not been enough to counter the demographic expansion. Read more


Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme (PSUP)

The challenges that face many cities in developing countries are outnumbered by opportunities. Read more

How PSUP works

Broad-based implementation
teams have been established
at the global, regional, national, and city levels to support the management and Read more


PSUP principles
PSUP is based on eight core principles. Read more
PSUP methodology
PSUP is structured in 3 phases. Read more